Rio Carnival 
Rio Carnival
Carnival is Rio's main event. It happens at the peak of summer, when Cariocas are at their best. Festivities attract thousands of people from all corners of the world. Carnaval, as spelled in Portuguese, is a 4-day celebration. It starts on Saturday, and ends on Fat Tuesday, or Mardi-Gras. Dates change every year. Carnival Sunday is seven weeks before Easter Sunday
The origins of Carnival are unclear, but most agree that it started as a pagan celebration in ancient Rome or Greece. Carnival balls were imported to Rio from Italy in the late nineteenth century, and had their golden era in the 1930 through 50's, with legendary balls at the Copacabana Palace and the Municipal Theater.

The Samba Parade began in the 30's - first timidly at Praça XI, and later on Av. Presidente Vargas. It found a permanent home in 1984 at the Sambodrome, a structure in the downtown area. Today Samba Parade is broadcast to dozens of countries, and all Brazilian states. Many people think of it as the greatest show on earth.

There's much more to Carnival than the Samba Parade, though. Street Carnival is loads of fun, free, and it happens all over the city. You are more than welcome to watch and to participate. Banda de Ipanema is one of the most traditional ones. It was founded in 1964, and today it'slisted as part of the city cultural heritage, attracting as
many as fifteen thousand people!

You gotta have balls if you think this is not enough! Hey, don't get us wrong. We are talking about the fabulous balls that happen at the clubs before, during and after Carnival! Pick out the right parties, and learn the do's and don'ts. You will get an idea of the good times waiting for you with our (Funny but) True Carnival Stories

Carnival 2004 happened from February 20-25. Beija-Flor was the champion of the Samba Parade, for the second year in a row! Carnival 2005 is from February 5 through 8. Request your hotel booking using our convenient reservation form, and choose from dozens of options in areas like Ipanema and Copacabana.


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